Windy City Media Group Frontpage News


home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor



Planner pens same-sex wedding organizer
by Ross Forman, Windy City Times

This article shared 3637 times since Wed Apr 8, 2015
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

With a background in playwriting, Jason Mitchell was having plays produced in New York City when he started to develop his career as an event planner.

Weddings were his favorite of the many different events on which he worked.

"Then, to my great surprise, I got engaged," he said, laughing. "I knew that I wasn't going to work with event planners because that's what I do; I just wanted to get one of those handy books, with checklists and calendars, so I don't forget anything."

But every book he found was geared for straight couples.

So Mitchell decided to write his own wedding-planning book for same-sex couples—an idea pushed on him by his husband, Michael Zahler, 31.

In January 2014, Mitchell released Getting Groomed—a wedding organizer for gay grooms. It was a two-year process from idea to securing an agent, a publisher, writing, editing, and more.

"Writing a book was very different from the writing I had been used to, and in many ways, I found it easier than writing a play," said Mitchell, 34, who grew up in South Florida and now lives in New York City. "I wasn't re-inventing the roadmap to a successful wedding; I was just changing who it was marketing to."

Thus, he did extensive research within the gay community, "to really find out what questions they were asking, what specifically they wanted covered," and more, he said.

The book covers material that is not specific to same-sex or straight weddings, such as, planning a venue and balancing a budget, in addition to specific questions for same-sex weddings, such as, how do you dress two grooms, how do you figure out a ceremony processional, invitation wording, etc.

The book, he said, "has been very well received."

Even among brides in straight weddings, who often discover the book through an online search for wedding planners.

"They like the style and tone better than other things out there. That's been great to find," Mitchell said.

Getting Groomed is packaged in a sleek two-ring binder, and is smaller than traditional wedding planners—on purpose, as the book is geared for men.

The book hits on almost every area of a wedding, focusing on the often overlooked details. It does not hit on the political debate over same-sex weddings.

Each chapter is separated by a different folder, "so it allows you to store all of your important documents in one place," he said.

There are subtitles to every chapter, with different song lyrics that are iconic to the gay community—from Madonna to Broadway musical.

And the book is humor-filled.

The late Joan Rivers provided a quote for the cover.

Mitchell said Rivers repeatedly asked about the book after it was released, and even offered ways to help promote it before her untimely passing. "It was huge" having her quote on the book, he said. "I was such a fan of hers; she was one of the most gifted comedians to ever grace the planet, and so inspiring."

Mitchell, the wedding planner at Shiraz Events, plans weddings for same-sex and straight couples—and has done more than 50.

"What I emphasize, particularly in the book, is the beauty of the wedding is a couple makes really conscious decisions to make it their own, to make it personal, to invent new traditions," he said. "What I really stress is, what goes into a wedding. We really get into the basic of what goes into a wedding—and then to give it a twist. Take, for instance, the bride who wore a black cocktail dress because she felt more comfortable in that than a white gown. I think that's wonderful. It should be their version of their perfect day."

Mitchell's weddings have ranged from the normal, if there is such a thing in the marriage world, to one that was put together in, ugh, 48 hours, he recalled.

"Gay people don't get married as a rite of passage; they get married because it's something that is really important to them. Therefore, their weddings are filled with really significant moments and really sincere ones," he said.

Mitchell's play The Boys Upstairs opened in London in January.

This article shared 3637 times since Wed Apr 8, 2015
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


Gay News

NATIONAL Marriage proposal, Creating Change, mural erased, 'Queer Santa' 2021-01-05
- A COVID-19 vaccine appointment at a Canton, South Dakota, hospital turned into a marriage proposal for one healthcare couple, noted. Robbie Vargas-Cortes, 31, a paramedic and EMS supervisor, was scheduled to get his vaccination on ...

Gay News

WORLD Lithuania outlook, HIV/AIDS and COVID, lawyer arrested, trans youth 2020-12-27
- Lithuania appears set to legalize same-sex civil partnerships next year, but same-sex marriage could be up to a decade away, according to Tomas Raskevicius—the country's only openly LGBT+ lawmaker, Reuters reported. "We're going to submit t ...

Gay News

Switzerland's parliament okays marriage equality, residents to have final say 2020-12-18
- On Dec. 18, the Swiss parliament approved a bill allowing same-sex couples to marry, finally bringing the nation in line with much of Europe on LGBTQ rights, reported. However, the Swiss residents themselves will have ...

Gay News

Billy Masters 2020-11-16
- "You can't say that marriage is a union between one man and one woman. Until very recently, that's what the vast majority of Americans thought. Now it's considered bigotry."—Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito. So much for ...

Gay News

WORLD Canada museum, gay NZ leader, marriage items, 'Drag Race' 2020-11-09
- The embattled Canadian Museum for Human Rights (CMHR) said it's planning sweeping changes to rebuild the organization more than four months after staff came forward with shocking allegations of racism and LGBT censorship, reported. The ...

Gay News

Jennifer N. Pritzker, Erin E. Solaro wed 2020-11-02
--From a press release - Jennifer N. Pritzker and Erin E. Solaro were married in a private ceremony in Chicago on Oct. 31, 2020. Ms. Pritzker is President & CEO of TAWANI Enterprises Inc., Lieutenant Colonel U.S. Army, Retired, and Founder ...

Gay News

WORLD Taiwan marriages, Nigeria court, protests, GQ Awards 2020-11-02
- Two women became the first military officers to marry their same-sex civilian partners at a mass military wedding in Taiwan—marking another landmark for LGBTQ+ rights in Asia, reported. The island's defense ministry called it an ...

Gay News

LGBTQ+ Equality Caucus co-chairs bring resolution affirming court's marriage ruling 2020-10-30
--From a press release - Washington, D.C. - Tomorrow the Congressional LGBTQ+ Equality Caucus Co-Chairs, Chris Pappas (NH-01), David Cicilline (RI-01), Angie Craig (MN-02), Sharice L. Davids (KS-03), Sean Patrick Maloney ...

Gay News

NATIONAL Marriage support, GLSEN, LGBTQ voting campaigns 2020-10-26
- Seventy percent of Americans support same-sex marriage, according to the 11th annual American Values Survey—the highest percentage recorded by a major national poll, NBC News reported. The results found just 28 percent of respondents oppose the ...

Gay News

Pope calls for same-sex civil unions in documentary (UPDATED) 2020-10-21
- In a departure from the position held by the Vatican's doctrinal office, Pope Francis called for the passage of civil union laws for same-sex couples in a documentary that aired in Rome, NBC News noted. "Homosexuals ...

Gay News

WORLD India couple, Japan items, pro-trans writers, Nigeria job fair 2020-10-12
- In India, a same-sex couple approached the Delhi High Court seeking legal recognition of their marriage under the Foreign Marriage Act, reported. The petitioners, an Indian citizen and an overseas citizen, are two gay men ...

Gay News

NATIONAL Marriage equality, minister and trans journalist die, HRC 2020-10-12
- LGBTQ-rights advocates are warning of a renewed threat to marriage equality, NBC News reported. President Donald Trump's nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court to succeed Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg ignited fears of ...

Gay News

Threat to marriage equality looms at Supreme Court, Lambda Legal responds 2020-10-05
--From a press release - (Washington, D.C., October 5, 2020) — Today, in a statement in Davis v. Ermold, authored by Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas and joined by Justice Samuel Alito, the Justices indicated a desire to overturn Obergefell v. ...

Gay News

WORLD Vancouver protest, dating apps, Budapest Pride, N. Ireland marriages 2020-09-08
- In Canada, protesters held a beach dance party in Vancouver's West End night in a bid to disrupt an event by a Toronto preacher who has been accused of anti-LGBTQ hate speech, reported. David Lynn, ...

Gay News

NATIONAL Bakery situation, tribal marriage, anti-LGBTQ crimes, Penn. lawmakers 2020-08-10
- Extreme right-wing organization the Church Militant requested that Detroit bakery Good Cakes and Bakes co-owner April Anderson (who's LGBTQ) put on a cake, "Homosexual acts are gravely evil. (Catholic Catechism ...


Copyright © 2021 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.








About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.